1st March 2017

‘We will go the distance’: Mangala tells UN in Geneva

1st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera addresses the 34th UNHRC sessions in Geneva yesterday  Amid setbacks and realpolitik considerations, the Government remains determined to follow through on its reconciliation and justice commitments, Foreign Minister tells UN in Geneva Mangala tells UNHRC Govt. resolve on transitional justice undiminished Truth-seeking Commission before Cabinet in two months  ‘Even one incident of torture is one too many,’ says Foreign Minister Mangala tells UN: New constitution will ‘unite a people who have been  divided too long   By Dharisha Bastians in Geneva In the face of mounting criticism about the pace of reform and setbacks in the transitional justice process, Sri Lanka told the United Nations yesterday about dilemmas the Government was confronting as it attempted to lead a war-torn and divided country on a journey of […]

UK says give Sri Lanka time to fully implement resolution

1st March 2017 // 0 Comments

The British Government told the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) today to give Sri Lanka time to fully implement the October 2015 resolution. British Minister for Asia and the Pacific at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Alok Sharma, told the Council during the high-level segment he welcomes Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera’s constructive engagement at the UNHRC. “We must give Sri Lanka time to fully implement the October 2015 resolution and post-conflict measures required to embed stability, reconciliation and justice,” he said. Sharma later had talks with Samaraweera on the sidelines of the 34th session of the UNHRC underway in Geneva. “Discussed the need to embed stability, reconciliation & justice in #SriLanka,” Sharma tweeted on his meeting with  Samaraweera. In his speech to the Council, Sharma said it was a […]

UK parliament debates Sri Lanka’s progress in human rights issues

1st March 2017 // 0 Comments

James Berry (Kingston and Surbiton) (Con)   Share this contribution I beg to move, That this House has considered human rights in Sri Lanka and the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council. It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Gapes, not only because it will be wonderfully fair and impartial but because I know that you take an interest in the issue. It is also a pleasure to be joined by so many members of the all-party parliamentary group for Tamils, in which I have seen, since my election, genuinely cross-party work on an issue of importance to many of our constituents. It is timely that we are holding this debate the day after the opening of the 34th session of […]

Sri Lanka could be let off the hook at UNHRC

1st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Despite heavy lobbying by human rights groups against giving any reprieve to Sri Lanka, the South Asian island nation is likely to be let off the hook at the current session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) due to exigencies of international politics, diplomats stationed in Colombo believe. The expectation here is that Sri Lanka will be given more time to meet its commitments contained in the UNHRC resolution which it co-sponsored in September 2015. Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe (R) and President Maithripala Sirisena stand next to each other during cricketer Kumar Sangakkara’s retirement ceremony, August 24, 2015. Reuters The Western nations, which enjoy disproportionate clout in the 47-member body, appear to be keen to see that the “accommodative” Sri Lankan government […]

Student ‘desperate to get back to studies’ after removal from UK is halted

1st March 2017 // 0 Comments

Home Office defers decision to remove Shiromini Satkunarajah to Sri Lanka until she completes her degree at Bangor A talented student who came within hours of being removed from the UK has said she is desperate to get back to her studies to catch up with the work she has missed while being held in police cells and an immigration detention centre. Shiromini Satkunarajah, 20, who was about to be put on a plane to her country of birth, Sri Lanka, told the Guardian she could not wait to get home to Bangor in north Wales, where she is expected to achieve a first-class degree. She thanked the tens of thousands of people who backed her campaign to stay, including fellow students across the UK, […]